Insta360 ONE camera: how this one shoots different

Chris Burns - Aug 28, 2017
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Insta360 ONE camera: how this one shoots different

The newest in 4K-capable 360 camera hardware comes in the Insta360 ONE, a device that’s unique in more ways than one. While the 360 (spherical) camera market expands in leaps and bounds, each device aims to bring both high quality output and a set of features that no competing camera has. For the Insta360 One, that means offering a new way to shoot.

I don’t care a whole lot about capturing 360-degree spherical video. It’s interesting when I’m in a situation where things are happening all around me, but that’s not something that happens all that often. What the Insta360 ONE presents is a unique use of the spherical camera tech – one that lets you shoot first, ask questions later.

They call it “Shoot First, Point Later” and “FreeCapture”. This technology allows the user to capture a video first, then edit. That in itself isn’t all that unique – it’s the method with which the editing is done that counts here. And the output – which is a rectangular, regular, flat-format video.

Here’s what happens with the Insta360 ONE:
1. Shoot video (360 spherical)
2. Open resulting spherical video on phone
3. Phone works like virtual window into video
4. Capture whatever part of the sphere I want

There’s also a feature within FreeCapture that allows a single element within the sphere to be tracked. This is called SmartTrack – it’s super simple, and if it works the way they’ve demonstrated, it’s a game-changer.

This piece of hardware isn’t mind-blowingly different from devices previously released with other brands. It’s the way they let the user execute the resulting video that counts. That’s where this device shines brightest. See our Insta360 ONE hands-on for more information on this next-gen spherical camera.


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